Jun 21, 2010
Meguiars Headlight Restoration Kit
I've always noticed in many olders cars that the outer lens covers become hazed-over with a yellowish tint and often in really bad cases the haze would completely obscure the light being thrown forward from the bulb and reflector behind it.
I'm always about two things when it comes to our transportation: Safety, keeping things properly maintained and yes, a good looking and clean vehicle. Hazed-over headlight lenses are not only really ugly making the car look nasty from the front but it's also a huge safety hazard at night; the clouded-over lenses diffuse the light coming from the headlights to the point that almost no light gets to the ground robbing you of the ability to see the road, other traffic and even pedestrians. And in darkly lit neighborhoods at night not being able to see someone crossing the street could end up being a really bad situation.
So when I noticed my own 9-year old Hyundai's lens covers were definitely in the category of being hazy I decided to take action. Of course my first thought was to simply pop-off the lens cover and get a new unit from the parts department and all would be good. Unfortunately headlight lens covers and the reflector are all one modular piece and not separable, that meant it would cost more than $500 for a pair of new units! That simply wasn't an option in this economy.
After doing some quick web-research I noticed Meguiars sold a one-step kit for restoring plastic lens covers, all that was required was using a powered drill to put their polishing head onto. For less than $30 at a local parts store I figured it was certainly worth the effort considering the only other option was just simply not affordable. And honestly, I was completely skeptical but Meguairs did offer a money-back guarantee if not satisfied so.... I tried it. (The money-back offer may have been a promotional)
After less than 30 minutes time I had two almost-new looking headlight lenses, completely devoid of any signs of haze or discoloration. I was flat-out floored. Confident I had a new tool in my belt of tricks I decided to see if I could replicate this same amazing revival in other car models and set off to try this same restoration on a few friends cars. And each time the result was the same, the haze, nasty cloudy and yellowish colorations all disappeared. Of course it took more time and effort to get the worse-case scenario lenses looking good, but it worked! (Denise, you owe me big-time)
CONCLUSION: HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
The kit is simplicity itself, a small bottle of polishing liquid, a small polishing pad you attach to your own electric drill and a micro-fiber cloth to wipe away excess after you're finished with the job. Now keep in mind this can only take away the haze that builds up over time from oxidation, it's not for polishing out deep scratches or small hits from rock-chips. For that Meguairs does offer a Pro-level kit but I've no idea what it costs or the process in which it works.
So if you've got hazed-over lenses no matter how bad you could either drain the bank and purchase totally new lens units or, you can spend less than $30 and some free time and break out a highly polished and cleaned up lens yourself.
And aside from the obvious safety benefits of allowing all the headlight power to reach the road you'll be surprised how immediately it makes your car look more appealing to the eye!